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J Med Virol. 2011 Jan;83(1):33-44. doi: 10.1002/jmv.21946.

Prevalence and correlates of GB virus C infection in HIV-infected and HIV-uninfected pregnant women in Bangkok, Thailand.

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  • 1Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


GB virus C (GBV-C) is an apathogenic virus that has been shown to inhibit HIV replication. This study examined the prevalence and correlates of GBV-C infection and clearance in three cohorts of pregnant women in Thailand. The study population consisted of 1,719 (1,387 HIV-infected and 332 HIV-uninfected) women from three Bangkok perinatal HIV transmission studies. Stored blood was tested for GBV-C RNA, GBV-C antibody, and if RNA-positive, genotype. Risk factors associated with the prevalence of GBV-C infection (defined as presence of GBV-C RNA and/or antibody) and viral clearance (defined as presence of GBV-C antibody in the absence of RNA) among women with GBV-C infection were examined using multiple logistic regression. The prevalence of GBV-C infection was 33% among HIV-infected women and 15% among HIV-uninfected women. GBV-C infection was independently associated (AOR, 95% CI) with an increasing number of lifetime sexual partners (referent-1 partner, 2 partners [1.60, 1.22-2.08], 3-10 partners [1.92, 1.39-2.67], >10 partners [2.19, 1.33-3.62]); injection drug use (5.50, 2.12-14.2); and HIV infection (3.79, 2.58-5.59). Clearance of GBV-C RNA among women with evidence of GBV-C infection was independently associated with increasing age in years (referent <20, 20-29 [2.01, 1.06-3.79] and ≥30 [3.18, 1.53-6.60]), more than 10 lifetime sexual partners (3.05, 1.38-6.75), and HIV infection (0.29, 0.14-0.59). This study found that GBV-C infection is a common infection among Thai women and is associated with HIV infection and both sexual and parenteral risk behaviors.

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